Thursday, 30 August 2012

Social Innovation Xperience (SIX)

Came across this interesting social event:  
Social Innovation Xperience (SIX) is Singapore's first Design Challenge for Social Good, which aims to gather tertiary students from different disciplines to collaborate and innovate on local social problems. SIX seeks to provide a visceral Xperience of social innovation for participants like you, by giving you a first hand Xperience in the collaborative process, primarily using Design Thinking as a tool.

SIX will be a two-day event 
When? 15th - 16th September 2012
Where? Singapore Management University (SMU)
Cost? Sign up individually ($10) or in pairs ($20) or in groups of 6 ($50)
How? or via here 
It will be carried out in the style of a competition, with 4 social challenges for teams to choose from.

Social Challenges

Social Innovation refers to new ideas that resolve existing social, cultural, economic and environmental challenges for the benefit of people and planet. A true social innovation is systems-changing – it permanently alters the perceptions, behaviours and structures that previously gave rise to these challenges.Even more simply, a social innovation is an idea that works for the public good.
SIX will put you through a rigorous Design Thinking process and draw from the expert knowledge of people across disciplines to come up with solutions for problems that our community faces.
Teams will get to tackle one of the five social challenges below, which are the broad themes of the five challenges. The specific challenge statement within each theme will be revealed to teams at SIX itself.
1. Community Development
2. Elderly and Intergenerational Bonding
3. Environment Sustainablity
4. Health and Personal Wellness
5. Transport

In this two days, you will first get a broad exposure to what social innovation is all about, after which you will dive into learning Design Thinking, an up and coming tool for innovation. The learning process will be an exciting, hands-on Xperience where you will be guided through the different stages of Design Thinking and at the very same time, applying this tool to come up with an innovative, insightful solution to a local social problem.


The winning team of each social challenge walks away with a $1000 cash prize, professional and exclusive mentor ship from Syinc , Newton Circus or The Hub to execute their ideas., free workshops and potential seed funding for their projects to help them make their idea a reality.
Leading up to this design challenge, there will be a Keynote & Plenary Discussion to let you gain insights into what social innovation is about, and how it is relevant in the local context and across sectors.
This event will have a special speaker
Jane Chen, Co-founder, Embrace Global
Jane Chen is the co-founder and CEO of Embrace, a social enterprise that aims to help the millions of vulnerable babies born every year in developing countries through a low-cost infant warmer. Unlike traditional incubators that cost up to $20,000, the Embrace infant warmer costs less than 1% of this price. The device requires no electricity, has no moving parts, is portable and is safe and intuitive to use.


Social Innovation

Social innovation is both the process and the result of designing, developing and growing existing or new ideas that work to meet pressing unmet social needs. It focuses on cross sector collaborations to bring about social solutions never thought before. This broad definition encompasses innovations associated with fields as diverse as fair trade, education, hospices, urban farming, waste reduction and restorative justice. Social innovation can come from individuals, groups and associations, the non-profit sector, the market and the state. The basic distinction between social and other innovations is that the innovation process is driven by social values as a primary imperative rather than private financial appropriation
Regardless of social enterprises, sustainable businesses, governments, NGOs or NPOs, the challenges the world faces are getting increasingly complex, and the nature of social issues is such that they cannot be clearly delineated from each other. An example would be the problem of inequality, which comes inevitably with poverty, lack of jobs, lack of basic education, lack of basic sanitation, malnutrition, and the list goes on. The intertwining nature of social issues require innovation to connect the dots. In addition, with the era of constrained public spending, social innovation can increase our impact against these challenges amidst with limited resources. By building a community's capacity to innovate and create new social relationships and models of collaboration, we increase the community's ability to be self-reliant in times of social crisis.

Just last weekend on Saturday with the districts yec I attended a workshop for design thinking on social issues . It was a enlightening moment as we gain insights observing what's happening in the community ( where we walked the streets of woodlands) - we saw jaywalking across the streets, much elderly people carrying heavy bags of groceries, young children queuing up for their own lunch without the accompaniment of their parents, a lot of young children with their grandparents but their parents were not in sight ( probably working)- issues that I have not noticed usually. So what then are the problems? What the. Are the solutions? What can we as an individual do? What can we as a group do? What can we as a community do?

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